Townhall meetings, door-to-door mailings and text messages; these are just a few examples of how you can improve stakeholder engagement and inform local residents and business of what is going on at your site. By using a construction communication app like SitePodium, this task becomes structured, less time consuming and much more 21st century.
All community engagement officers know how much time and effort is spent on stakeholder engagement, especially because the group of external stakeholders is so complex and sensitive. And no matter how hard you try; you are often left with the feeling you should have done more.
With organisations like the Considerate Constructors’ Scheme, more attention is paid to stakeholder engagement in construction than ever before. And SitePodium is the ideal construction communication app to include all the affected parties in your communication, just as they deserve to be.
What is a construction communication app?
A construction communication app is an umbrella tool with which you communicate with subscribers. At the start of your project, you need to market it well and get it noticed. You point out that the app is the main point of contact for everyone interested in your project. For the locals it is as easy as downloading a free app to their phone and they are ready to go.
Taking SitePodium as an example, a good construction communication app has a news feed, where you post updates, notices and milestones reached. This news feed is much like the news feeds on other social media platforms; it is chronological, you can attach videos and pictures and there is the option to respond.
Apart from that there are pages with contact information, you can add the overall scheduling of the project and invite subscribers to give feedback. Naturally, there also is an about-page with information about what you are doing. Posts can be shared and communication back and forth is encouraged.
Easy to use
Because the set-up is so familiar, almost all subscribers will find a construction communication app easy to use. For you, at the back-end, it is also simple. You write one message, attach a document if needed, and send it out.
From that moment, it is available to all subscribers and you will start to receive feedback. That is a lot easier than having to go door-to-door. And let’s face it, nowadays users will much sooner open an app than an envelope.
How does this encourage stakeholder engagement?
Using a construction communication app is futureproof and completely of our time. You spend less time on the street and more time on communicating the right message. You can keep it light and informal, showing pictures of achievements and sharing maps of planned detours.
An app like this encourages stakeholder engagement in several ways:
- Communication is immediate.
- Subscribers are encouraged to respond.
- Information is easily accessible and can be viewed back.
- You can use visuals and milestones to create a sense of achievement.
- It helps you to keep focus on the bigger picture and the end-result.
There is a time and a place for everything
Naturally, there will be communications you do not want to use a construction communication app for. If you have important news for shop owners, for example, it is better said in a formal e-mail or letter. Especially if it impacts their day-to-day business.
A construction communication app should not be the only means of communication. Even though it is fast and effective, it cannot be compared to the effect face-to-face contact still has. You use the app to announce a meeting for the local residents and to invite them all. Because of the app, you can hold fewer meetings, but they are too valuable to be replaced altogether.
As you use the construction communication app, you will find a balance between the information you communicate through the app and the information you want to formally share or announce face-to-face.
The pros and cons of construction communication apps
At SitePodium we know that our app has already helped hundreds of projects improve their stakeholder engagement. And because it is such an approachable and familiar format, there has not been much resistance. In fact, local community members often comment on why something was not shared on SitePodium and see it as the first and foremost place to get information on a building project.
Using a construction communication app has many advantages. Obviously, a few disadvantages can be found as well. To conclude and summarise, they are both listed here.
Advantages of construction communication apps:
- Fast, easy and immediately.
- Encourages stakeholder engagement.
- Reaches all relevant subscribers at once.
- Low-key, informal and familiar communication tool for all.
- Can be used for communicating several types of messages.
- Video’s, infographics and pictures can be attached to the messages.
- Helps bringing focus back to the bigger picture and end result.
Disadvantages of construction communication apps:
- Not suitable when formal communication is necessary.
- Reduces other communication methods, but does not replace all of them.
- Requires an extra (small) investment.
- Only works if you encourage communities to use it.
The disadvantages of construction communication apps are easily overcome.
You already use different communication methods for different interest groups anyway and with an app this is actually simplified.
Investing in a construction communication app will not put a dent in your budget by any means as they are very affordable. The pricing for SitePodium is readily available on our website.
And if you put a bit of effort into promoting the construction communication app well, you will get all the subscribers you need relatively quickly. Add a QR-code to your initial communication and downloading it could not be easier.
SitePodium is the construction communication app for you
Invest in SitePodium and you will lift stakeholder engagement to new levels. You encourage discussion and communication between all your stakeholders. Get your internal stakeholders on it as well, and they immediately get a feel for how their project is perceived by the world on the other side of the fence.
For users SitePodium has a special feature with which you can measure the results of your communication efforts. The data it collects is presented in the professional admin module where you have access to statistics which you can turn into reports.
We would like to speak with you about how our construction communication app can make a difference in your project and engagement. You can contact us, book a demo or download our brochure for more information.